Thandi hawa, Kali ghata

aa hi gayi jhoomke, pyaar liye dole, hasen, naache jiya ghoomke

Madhubala was a magician who could cast a spell on her audience – be it a scene that required her to sob or break out in a giggle – she was a master puppeteer when it came to getting the exact response she wanted. And so, I was pleased to watch her in Mr & Mrs 55, which is a comic delight when it comes to the famed actress.

Even more surprising was the character of Guru Dutt, who left behind his garb of the brooding man and instead, took a plunge into a less brooding man.

Before I start the onslaught of trivia, I have something to ask this time. Does anyone know why the film was called so? I read somewhere that a plausible reason could be because it released in 1955 – which I must admit is slightly disappointing a reason and a sign of diminished creativity. 😛 Theories are welcome too!

Those who are fans of RK  Laxman, the cartoonist, would be delighted to know that all the sketches you see in the film are drawn by him. Brilliant, that man. And for those who haven’t seen the film, Guru Dutt plays the role of a man trying to make a livelihood out of cartoons.

I read on this link that the film is loosely based on a play called Modern Marriage, written by Abrar Alvi, who was a writer for most of Dutt’s films and one of his closest friends.

A not-so-interesting fact is that Mr & Mrs 55 was the only film in which, neither Lata nor Asha were playback singers for Madhubala. (It was Geeta Dutt). Save for this film, it was always the former two who sang for the actress.

Like all Guru Dutt films, this one too featured Johnny Walker, but unknown to him, this film would change his life forever. Because it was on the sets of this film that the much-revered comedian met his wife, Noorjahan. She was the younger sister of actress Shakeela.

If you haven’t seen this film, you must. At the risk of repeating myself, it is a delight. 🙂

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7 thoughts on “Thandi hawa, Kali ghata

  1. Hi!!
    To answer your question as to why the film was named Mr and Mrs 55 – simply because Divorce became legal that year.. which is pressed upon at the start of the film.

    And though, mostly Lata and Asha sang for Madhubala, this album belonged to Geeta Dutt and her voice fitted Madhubala to a T!! I can’t even imagine anyone else singing “thandi hawa kaali ghata…”

    Its a delightful film and a beautiful album!

    PS – Nice blog! Thanks so much for sharing trivia!

    • Oh!! That IS interesting! I couldn’t even imagine the reason could be related to divorce. Thanks Punya! And I agree, the album belongs to Geeta Dutt – and though most people think no one can trump Lata or Asha, I believe Dutt was in a class by herself !

      Thanks for reading, keep coming back 🙂

  2. I love this film, despite the fact that the eventual message is a very anti-feminist one (not that I’m much of a feminist, but still… the Kumkum character got on my nerves, with her constant harping about how it was all right for her husband to beat her, because after all, he loved her too! Grrrr!) But Guru Dutt and Madhubala make a great pair, the music is superb, and the end is lovely. 🙂

    BTW: I’ve always wondered how Johnny Walker met Noor on the sets of this film – after all, she wasn’t in it. Or at least I’ve never spotted her in it.

    P.S. Have just realised. He must have already met her, because they worked together in Aar-Paar (1954).

    • well, maybe it’s ok for the husband to beat the wife… as long as she gets to give it back too 😛 Dutt and Madhubala make a very, for the lack of a better word, strange pair – in that their personalities, at least in this movie, are so different! He is level-headed, she is a airhead 🙂 but they are good together nevertheless!

  3. I think Geeta Dutt also had few songs for Madhubala in couple of other movies too, I’m sure about this but don’t exactly remember the songs.
    It is difficult to describe Madhubala’s beauty which is like “Koi bataye kahan kasar hai” type but you did try and you deserve praises for the effort

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